Its been difficult taking the time to blog lately. We've had a ton of stuff going on around here, including witnessing quite a bit of betrayal in those close to us. Seems like the enemy is on the prowl, and some humans are just all to glad to open a few windows for him to sneak in. Maybe I'm taking that analogy too far.
Anyway, I wanted to write about some things that have been racing through this over occupied brain of mine. 1st of all, I have found what it is that I hate about the prosperity movement within the evangelical church. Let me back up.
I spend between 1 1/4 hr and 2 1/2 hrs in the car everyday taking Brynne (our intern for the summer) to and from the orphanage where she is serving. Some days Brandon either takes her or brings her home, but the majority of the time it is me. Everyday on the way to go pick her up I listen to a preacher on the radio. He is the senior pastor at a very large charismatic church here in Xela.
I listen very critically. I have been challenged and encouraged by some of his teaching, but over all...I hate it. I absolutely hate it. It took me over a month of listening to really put my finger on it. On what I hate about it. Let me say one thing before I move on. I have listened to a very small percentage of that pastor's teaching. So what I am about to say is just commentary on what I've heard, not on the man or the rest of his teaching.
Although I disagree with much of what he says regarding the role of faith or God's promises in relation to us, he isn't teaching total error. The error isn't what I hate. What I hate is the focus. It is entirely ME driven.
God wants good things for ME, God has a plan for ME, God doesn't will that I would suffer, God wants to provide for ME. God gives ME peace, ME provision, ME goodness, ME, ME, ME!!! You know...many of that is true. But for goodness-sakes, when did the Bible become a book about ME? Since when did the existence and work of the Trinity become solely for MY benefit?
This is just INSANE! AND YES, I'M YELLING! God existed for eternity before He created man. He didn't create man to fulfill some basic need in Himself. He wasn't lonely or lacking in anyway before He created all of us. We are certainly not the center of His universe!
Let me make something very clear...and if you don't agree, please speak up...God's existence and work is for His glory, not our benefit. This is, I believe, one of the greatest and gravest missteps of my generation (and even before). No wonder the church is so obsessed with "growth" in terms of larger buildings, larger programs, larger staffs. Why we as members of the body are more concerned with (and spends more money on) baggy thighs and wrinkles than with the lost and suffering. Why "self-esteem" is preached more than self denial. Why we do everything in our power to eliminate our own suffering and remove any uncomfortable circumstances from our daily lives as well as our spiritual lives (as if those were really separate) and are taken totally by surprise and blame God when bad things happen to us good, Christian folk.
The chief end of man is to glorify myself and enjoy my stuff forever.
The chief end of man is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever.
Is that my chief end? Is it yours?
Ok...that is the end of that rant. Please share your thoughts.